Kyoto Shimbun 2012.9.28 News

Public Showing of Entire Sutra of Buddha, a National Treasure
Special Exhibition at Daigo-ji Temple from September 29

Daigo-ji Temple, Fushimi Ward, Kyoto, is publicly showing the national treasure "Eingakyou," or the Illustrated Sutra of Cause and Effect, an illustrated biography of Buddha made in the Nara Period, in its special exhibition "Daigo-ji no Shiho," or treasures of Daigo-ji Temple, which is being held from September 29 in the Reihokan museum on the temple grounds. It is the first time that the entire sutra of about 15.4 meters long has been displayed.

The illustrated sutra is a picture scroll of the illustrated version of "Kakogenzai Ingakyo," or sutra of cause and effect in the past and the present, in which Buddha's previous and present incarnations are described. It is said there were eight volumes in total.

Of the eight, the one possessed by Daigo-ji Temple is considered the fifth volume. The scroll depicts scenes including the Buddha, who had become a priest, discussing the four sufferings in human life, or birth, aging sickness and death, with a hermit, the beginning of his meditation under a Bodhi tree after six years of asceticism, and defying Mara to achieve enlightenment.

A total of 64 treasures are shown in the special exhibition, including five National Treasures and 17 Important Cultural Properties, such as the National Treasure "Yakushi Nyorai Zazo," or a seated image of Bhaisajyaguru, and the Important Cultural Property "Ryu-so-ka-zu," or a painting of willows, grasses and flowers by Tohaku Hasegawa, which was painted on room partitions in the "Omote-Shoin," or main drawing room, of Sanboin.

The exhibition continues until December 16. It will be closed from November 29 to December 4. There is an admission fee, but there is no charge for elementary school students and younger. For more information, call Daigo-ji Temple at 075-571-0002.

(translated by Galileo, Inc.)

Photo= The 15.4 meter long National Treasure, "Illustrated Sutra of Cause and Effect," which is being publicly shown in its entirety for the first time (Reihokan museum, Daigo-ji Temple, Fushimi Ward, Kyoto)